What does FCA regulated mean?

The FCA is an acronym for the Financial Conduct Authority, which is the conduct regulator of more than 58,000 financial services businesses in the UK. Its primary aims are to protect consumers, enhance market integrity and promote fair competition across the financial services sector for everyone from individuals to small businesses to multinationals.

According to the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000, any firm carrying out regulated financial activities in the UK has to be authorised and registered by the FCA, including everyone from banks to insurance companies.

While the FCA works directly with HM Treasury and is accountable to them and to parliament, it remains an independent public body funded entirely by the fees it charges to the firms it regulates.

Why is the FCA important?

In the UK, financial services companies of every kind (from credit card brands to foreign exchange facilitators like Clear Currency to pension providers) employ more than two million people and contribute more than £65 billion to the UK economy.

If the markets work well, are competitive and benefit everyone from customers to staff to shareholders, the UK’s status as a global leader and financial hub will continue – this is what the FCA helps make happen.

How does a business become FCA regulated?

Firstly, any business looking to get FCA authorisation needs to meet its strict criteria. When applying for authorisation (which can take anything from six to 12 months), businesses need to show they are ‘ready, willing and organised’ to comply with the rules, requirements and standards of the regulatory system.

This means that the business and the people running it are capable of making informed decisions about how to run that business and are accountable for their actions. They must be:

  • Ready to work with the FCA to meet their obligations.
  • Willing to be open, honest and proactive in understanding and carrying out their regulatory duties.
  • Organised enough to carry out the activity they’ve applied for regulation in.

Once authorised and regulated, businesses need to meet a strict set of minimum standards, comply with the rules and principles relevant to their market and send regular reports to the FCA demonstrating this.

What does being FCA regulated mean for our customers?

The FCA will regularly ‘review how the firm engages with customers to check that they are being treated fairly during their relationship with the firm’.

The application and process of getting FCA regulation is extremely thorough so it can be sure that those businesses granted regulation are legitimate, reliable and honest. This means you know that when you use Clear Currency to transfer your money, you’re dealing with an honest, accountable and competitive business – and crucially that whenever we make an exchange for you, your money is always safeguarded.

The Clear Currency effect:

Keep it simple


The FCA regulates financial companies in the UK to make sure they’re behaving themselves.


It takes up to one year and lots of regulations for businesses to apply and get FCA authorisation.


If a business is FCA authorised and or regulated, you know it’s legitimate and your money is safe with them.

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